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Nebraska

Nebraska, Cornhusker State

If you can’t tell from the state nickname, Nebraska is a farming state. And like many mostly rural states, Nebraska’s rural areas are seeing population decline.

Between the 2000 & 2010 US Censuses, 61 of the 93 counties in Nebraska saw population declines. A 2013 census estimate shows the trend of rural flight continuing. Hitchcock county was hit the hardest, shrinking by 17% in a decade. As of 2015, just three counties in Nebraska account for 54% of the states total population.

Almost 90% of the towns in Nebraska now have a population below 1,000 residents. A similarity shared with Kansas, Oklahoma, Iowa, South Dakota & North Dakota. Fifty one of the counties in the state are listed as “nonmetropolitan”, meaning they lack a town with a population greater than 2,500 residents. Hitchcock county by comparison has a county wide population of 2,900.

Lawmakers have been looking at ways to keep, or attract people, but they have had little effectiveness. Nebraska state Senator Paul Schumacher said something has to be done “because western Nebraska is being evacuated.”

Images from Nebraska

Lost Americana is about telling the stories of the people who live in rural America.

•Have you lived in the same rural area since the 1970/80s?

•Were you the last class to graduate from a rural school before it closed its doors forever?

•Do you know of a small town (under 2,000 people) that is a shell of it’s former self?

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